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Avaunt

Boldly going again.

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Well now, which of Ashers books to read first.

 

They are set in one contained universe, but set over a few centuries. They are also about three kind of different topics, but because they have long-life tech, and androids, and ( possibly ) magic humans they all share a few characters.

 

Looked at from the point of view of which book happened first in its timeline, you have this.

 

  1. Prador Moon
  2. The Shadow of the Scorpion
  3. Gridlinked
  4. The Line of Polity
  5. Brass Man
  6. Polity Agent
  7. Line War
  8. The Technician
  9. The Skinner
  10. The Voyage of the Sable Keech
  11. Orbus
  12. Hilldiggers

And you could very easily read them that way.

 

Kind of a main character is called Ian Cormac though, and his stories are

 

 

 

Agent Cormac series

 

  1. Gridlinked (2001)
  2. The Line of Polity (2003)
  3. Brass Man (2005)
  4. Polity Agent (2006)
  5. Line War (2008)

and they are the ones I read first. I suggest you don't read his stories out of order.

 

So either Gridlinked or Prador Moon.

 

You will like them, I have already re-read them twice, they are that good.

 

 

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Thank you! Very much. Yet....I don't want to thank you, because now I have more to read :laugh:

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The thought of someone using transporters to remove vital organs......damn! That's harsh. OR transport a bomb inside someone

I'd imagine there's some sort of bullshit pseudo scientific argument about how they can only move around objects as a coherent lump instead of breaking it down into components, and I'm sure there was something about them not being able to transport anything into a space that's already occupied by something else...

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The Federation would be impossible to manage if warp drive created time dilation; all the clocks would run at different speeds.

Isn't that the point of that "Stardate" stuff on the telly, though? I thought they used that for log entries because time dilation would be enough of a factor that their local time would have diverted from time at their point of origin to at least some extent.

 

I don't know how they determine the Stardate. I guess I assumed it was something all the spacefaring species adopted out of the convenience of not having to use any one planet's schedule.

 

That's actually something I really like about the set up in the original series, even if it's obviously been fudged to the extent that it only causes a slight inconvenience when it comes to book keeping, rather than years or decades of relative time being lost on long haul trips.

 

Having a Stardate wouldn't keep them from coming home hundreds-or-whatever years after the people who gave them their mission had died of old age, if the engines had warped the crew as well as the space around them. They would just have the same discrepancy on a different format. To avoid that the writers would have to take relativity out of the crew's travel experience or just ignore it, and the latter option would have severely annoyed Spock (though he wouldn't admit it).

 

 

Prador Moon

The Shadow of the Scorpion

Gridlinked

The Line of Polity

Brass Man

Polity Agent

Line War

The Technician

The Skinner

The Voyage of the Sable Keech

Orbus

Hilldiggers

 

 

Gridlinked (2001)

The Line of Polity (2003)

Brass Man (2005)

Polity Agent (2006)

Line War (2008)

 

PrtSc

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Well, with the warp drive, they are travelling into the future, from the point of view of observers that are "stationary" or merely moving at normal speed.

 

Your sensors work ahead of your craft while in warp, so you are seeing into both your own and any observers future. As you leave an area at warp speed, you can turn the sensors "backward" down the route you are taking, can study the past as it occurs in the area you are travelling away from, and also study the future of those people you interacted with at the point you left "normal" speed.

 

As soon as you engage the warp drive heading away from an observer, to them, you slip into the future, you leave their light cone behind at X speed, which means you are ahead of their time too, as they are things utterly dependent on one another.

 

You can then go back towards that point in warp, which means in effect back in time for anyone who was in normal drive in that area.

 

So let us say you interact with some craft, say you fire on it. They flee in normal speed. You fuck off at warp speed, looking "back" with your sensors , and follow their path, see them move off, and watching, you will see YOUR OWN SHIP pop into view and re-engage them. You watch to see how successful your attack is. You win the fight , so tell your crew to warp back to that point in space/time. If you don't win the fight, you don't go back and engage, so in effect, it means you always win, which is a paradox.

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Do they ever explain what their sensors are? If you turned cameras backward at warp you wouldn't see anything, because light couldn't catch up with you. I think they got past that problem by inventing "subspace sensors" but most viewers probably never realized why those were necessary. The Picard Maneuver seems to be an example of the above type of paradox, but it would only work on ships with normal sensors.

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yes, that was part of what I was saying, their sensors are obviously using something, some medium, that is instantaneous. They never say "No captain, we can't see that because we are exceeding warp factor such and such, so we are going faster than our sensor medium, away from the target". The captain says "What is there on sensors" and they either say "Nothing on sensors captain" or they show him.

 

If they are going warp factor X, and look behind and see something, they are using faster than light tech sensors, therefore they are looking outside of time, i.e. instantaneous from the point of view of the target. They in effect are looking from outside of time relative to the target, so their POV must be independent of their own relative time as well, it must kind of pick a spot in space and open like a window, absorb photons and transmitt them back to the ship. If this wasn't happening, you could never maintain a focus, as your time, and the targets time are retreating from one another faster than the light, instantaneously in effect.

 

It is all relative, lol.

 

Here is a question. You say they have claimed warp speed is a kind of fold in space in front of the ship. OK, I have heard this theory in actual physics descussions.

 

Are they actually at the warp speed?. Or is it they have shrunk space ahead of them, like running on a treadmill that is travelling forwards on a truck bed?.

 

If you open a bay door and drop a brick outside with a booster rocket on, then as it goes away, turn off the warp, what speed is the brick at?. It must be at warp speed, or the weapons. i.e. photon torps, could never be fired forward of the craft, while in warp speed. As soon as you fired them, and they went "ahead" of where space was warped, they would be in real space again, and you would warp over top of them/catch up to them. They could never go forward and hit an enemy.

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Seeing them get anything they want to appear on the main viewscreen for years I imagined the sensors must generate some kind of disembodied third-person consciousness that could float around, even out of time, in or out of warp fields. If I were going to try to write that into a story today I'd base it on quantum entanglement and hope whatever I came up with didn't get laughably dated too quickly by physicists. I don't have any ST tech manuals and I don't think that phenomenon was ever satisfactorily explained on the show. When somebody realized (the biggest reason) why the transporters wouldn't work the writers just added Heisenberg Compensators. I heard a fan asked Mike Okuda how they worked and he replied, "Very well, thank you!"

As for the warp question, it seems they use a variation on the Alcubierre Drive, which does like so:

Star_Trek_Warp_Field.png

I really don't know how they reconcile the weapons with that, but the first thing that comes to mind is a pencil in a glass of water, the image distorted by light refraction but the pencil actually straight.

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The thought of someone using transporters to remove vital organs......damn! That's harsh. OR transport a bomb inside someone

I hate to bring it up. I mean I really really hate to bring it up. But didn't the a species in ugh Voyager have a transporter phaser for stealing organs.

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As for the warp question, it seems they use a variation on the Alcubierre Drive, which does like so:

Star_Trek_Warp_Field.png

The problem with it being based on that is that Alcubierre didn't publish about that notion until 1994, which means that the somewhat luddite Gene Roddenberry probably wasn't thinking of that one when he was working out his jargon. "Warp drive" has been a traditional piece of sf pseudo rationalisation double talk since the '40s at least, after all. (Which, I think, is why Alcubierre uses it, isn't it?)

(And however popular Alcubierre's figures have been with some sf writers since the turn of the millenium, they don't explain how to generate the Lorenz bubble his concept is based on, or get out of it again when you arrive at your destination.)

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I didn't say ST warp drive was based on the Alcubierre Drive. It's a similar idea which lacks those problems you mentioned.

Why do you call Gene Roddenberry a Luddite? Do you mean that insofar as the warp drive idea he was using is older than ST?

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I mean insofar as an awful lot of the original series episodes dealt with technologies going horribly out of control and often having to be talked to death by William Shatner. Technical fixes for problems are never offered, and not even the Enterprise's drives are up to doing their job without stressing out James Doohanr. A sort of general distrust of technological apparatus is endemic to OS Star Trek, and as Roddenberry's was the main hand on the tiller (whatever Harlan Ellison likes to claim), that was most likely down to him.

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NERDS! :smile:

 

That's a compliment by the way. I'm loving this.

 

I wonder if the phasers & photon torpedoes, being phased energy, allow them to be fired while at warp and at ships at warp.

 

Also, I always thought warp drive did just that, warped the space around the ship allowing to move from A to B in less time and the impulse engines provide the thrust. Doesn't subspace have something to do with it? As in the warp field puts the ship slightly out of phase into another dimension? So, how could there be a time dialation?

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I wonder if the phasers & photon torpedoes, being phased energy, allow them to be fired while at warp and at ships at warp.

Nope. If they're phased energy, they travel at light speed. You might even get a situation like jets dropping their rockets and then getting hit up the arse by them as they pass the things, which happened a few times before pilots had got their heads around supersonic capable fighters.

 

(Unless we're still talking Alcubierre, in which case, what happens in the bubble stays in the bubble...)

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I mean insofar as an awful lot of the original series episodes dealt with technologies going horribly out of control and often having to be talked to death by William Shatner. Technical fixes for problems are never offered, and not even the Enterprise's drives are up to doing their job without stressing out James Doohanr. A sort of general distrust of technological apparatus is endemic to OS Star Trek, and as Roddenberry's was the main hand on the tiller (whatever Harlan Ellison likes to claim), that was most likely down to him.

 

 

There are a lot of technical fixes for problems. Spock's parasite in "Operation: Annihilate" is removed by a blast of light. Though it blinds him, he recovers. Radiation: our harmless friend. Energy beams from the ship incite behaviors that destroy the spore influence on the planet of the lotus eaters. Khan is beaten by Kirk in personal combat thanks to an inanimate carbon rod. What the transporter puts asunder it apologetically joins again in "The Enemy Within". I think that episode was propaganda from the transporter industry actually. The ship's phasers destroy Apollo's shrine, saving humanity from Utopia, but the happiness of that ending's debatable. Spock's shuttle trip kills the giant space amoeba that was going to infest the galaxy.

There are a lot of haywire computers and evil robots threatening human and alien development, but it's by no means one-sided.

 

 

Technically phasers fire nadions, which makes them particle beam weapons and not energy weapons per se. If I'm right, that means their rays travel shy of lightspeed.

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Fair points, but it always struck me as more anti than pro taken as a whole.

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Also, for whatever it's worth. The transporters always had some limitations due to power requirements, distance and composition of the material being transported. That's why they never used replicators (based on transporter tech) to make whole ships. It would take too much power & resources. Also, when transporting people there is a distance limit because the signal will break down

 

The thought of someone using transporters to remove vital organs......damn! That's harsh. OR transport a bomb inside someone

 

How about transporting two guys on to a ship moving at warp speed and which is several light years away?

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Also, for whatever it's worth. The transporters always had some limitations due to power requirements, distance and composition of the material being transported. That's why they never used replicators (based on transporter tech) to make whole ships. It would take too much power & resources. Also, when transporting people there is a distance limit because the signal will break down

 

The thought of someone using transporters to remove vital organs......damn! That's harsh. OR transport a bomb inside someone

 

How about transporting two guys on to a ship moving at warp speed and which is several light years away?

Yeah...well...he had highly complex equations to help. So, there :icon_wink:

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Not to mention a Vulcan with previous knowledge (and the aforementioned equations) of events which had yet to happen. In a way, Spock just dreamed them on to the Enterprise using Scotty's equations as the ether of the dream.

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It's true, visionaries lay out the future and leave the details to the engineers. It's only when the engineers start transporting chunks of space around that the visionaries wake up screaming.

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I always think of the SDI programme in this connection.

:tongue:

You know, the fact that the three main ideas men for Reagan's folly appear to have been science fiction writers, which must have made the job for the engineers who were stuck trying to produce something viable looking from their bullshit briefs even harder...

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Actually, I do think it was done exactly as a foil, they knew that, everytime before the US government had announced a new direction of research, the USSR invested in it too, and tried to keep up.

 

I read somewhere not too long after the fall of the USSR, that Buzz Aldrin let slip to a reporter that at the meeting at Nivens house where they developed the initial approach to government, the consensus was that it was worth doing because they knew the USSR would devote resources they couldn't afford to countering SDI. That none of them ever really thought it was as viable as the claims.

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Um, the Soviets were the Evil Empire. What part of "STAR WARS" defense program don't you understand...? :sword:

How in Christ's name anybody seriously thought that they were going to get anything viable out of the billions that were pissed away on it, mostly. That was unlikely, even if they'd had people who had a clue about engineering as ideas men for it it, rather than idiots like Robert Heinlein and his two mini mes...

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